Blood donations are typically down this time of year, but patients need blood
Cedar Valley, Iowa — The winter months can be among the most challenging times of year for the American Red Cross to collect enough blood donations. Many donors are busy with holiday activities, and inclement weather can force the cancellation of blood drives. Additionally, some donors become temporarily ineligible because of seasonal illnesses.
To help make sure patients continue to receive the blood products they need this winter, the Red Cross is partnering with Rock 108 and 107.3 The Party to host the Cedar Valley Holiday Drive on Dec. 30 from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center, 8201 Dakota St., Cedar Falls. Attendees can help save lives, enjoy refreshments and receive a Red Cross T-shirt, while supplies last.
“The Red Cross is grateful to the Cedar Valley community for supporting patients by donating lifesaving blood,” said Judi Faas, donor recruitment account manager for the American Red Cross Badger-Hawkeye Blood Services Region. “Year after year generous donors roll up a sleeve during this busy holiday season and give the gift of life. Their efforts are very much appreciated.”
Blood donors of all types are needed. Those with types O, A negative and B negative blood are encouraged to make a Power Red donation at this blood drive. Power Red donors give a concentrated dose of red blood cells during a single donation, allowing them to maximize their impact. Donated blood may be used to help accident victims, surgery patients, organ transplant patients, and those receiving treatment for leukemia, cancer or sickle cell disease. There is no substitute for donated blood products.
How to donate blood
Simply download the American Red Cross Blood Donor App, visit redcrossblood.org or call 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card or driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17 years of age in most states (16 with parental consent where allowed by state law), weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 years of age and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements.
Blood donors can now save time at their next donation by using RapidPass to complete their pre-donation reading and health history questionnaire online, on the day of their donation, prior to arriving at the blood drive. To get started and learn more, visit redcrossblood.org/RapidPass and follow the instructions on the site.
About the American Red Cross
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.